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The Uncivil Servant: A Response to Bush’s Broadside

by Mitchell Abidor Lawrence Bush complains in his “broadside” post about progressive Jews embracing Jewish identity that “It is only when Jews act as a religious community, or in service of narrow self-interest, that Jews are portrayed as Jews in America. When they act in the name of our finest humanistic traditions, in a univeralist […]

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Wall Street and Jewish Ethical Identity

Jews and the Financial Meltdown by George Salamon “We are doing God’s work.” —Lloyd Blankfein, CEO, Goldman Sachs “How odd of God/To choose the Jews.” —William Norman Ewer, British journalist We know that versions of the second thought ran through the minds of some moviegoers as they watched Inside Job, the award-winning 2010 documentary about […]

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Black Liberation and Jewish Identity

From the Spring 2014 issue of Jewish Currents The exploitation and oppression of African Americans have been defining features of our country’s history since the first black slaves were hauled ashore in the Virginia colony in 1619. Black servitude was a keystone of our country’s wealth for more than two centuries, and underpaid black labor […]

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Jewish Identity: Is the Magic Gone?

by George Salamon “No one speaks for the Jews. We are the people of the great fraction; the whole of us must always be described as the number of Jews divided by the number of Jews.” —Earl Shorris The “Great Fraction” — it made Jewish communities in the Diaspora alluring and infuriating. It was a […]

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From Orthodoxy to Bacon in Five Uneasy Steps

by Judith Bernstein STEP ONE: INTERMARRY       My father Nahum and his ten siblings grew up in an Orthodox Jewish family on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. His parents had emigrated from Russia in the late 19th century, and my father, the youngest, was born in 1908. His father Charles ran a restaurant in the neighborhood. When […]

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From “How Jewish Are You” to “How Are You Jewish?

Responding Creatively to the Pew Survey by Rabbi Richard Hirsh illustrations by Sarah Glidden When the Pew Research Center released its new study, “A Portrait of Jewish Americans,” observers looking at the same data arrived at often opposite conclusions as to whether the “news” was good or bad, cause for hope or despair, confirming of […]

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Letter from Birzeit, #11: Facing Sexual Harassment

by Maya Rose Goldman Maya Rose Goldman is a third-year student at the University of Chicago, where she studies Human Rights, Anthropology, and Arabic. After a visit to Palestine in the Spring of 2012, she became passionate about understanding the situation in the Occupied Territories and the relationship between Israel and Palestine. In August, she […]

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Letter from Birzeit, #4: Unclear Identity

by Maya Rose Goldman Maya Rose Goldman is a third-year student at the University of Chicago, where she studies Human Rights, Anthropology, and Arabic. After a visit to Palestine in the Spring of 2012, she became passionate about understanding the situation in the Occupied Territories and the relationship between Israel and Palestine. In August, she […]

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Letter from Granada

by Elana Michelson Greetings, all, from the city of Granada, my sabbatical home away from home, where the Muslims and Jews once held civilization together while Europe was throttling itself into modernity, at which point, in a staggering display of hypocrisy, Ferdinand and Isabel rode into town in Moorish dress and proceeded to break every […]

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